What’s The Latest Scoop on the Hot Topics in Holistic Dentistry? Find Out Below!
Did you know that an extracted tooth can cause long term systemic health issues? Find out more
Did you know that an extracted tooth can cause long term systemic health issues? Find out more
Interesting video from a Fox News segment recently. They had their guest expert on who was a dentist to discuss fluoride. This dentist calls fluoride a “big experiment” and talks about how many unfluoridated communities have LESS decay than fluoridated communities.
Take it for what it’s worth, but it’s yet another sign that dentistry is slowly (and begrudgingly) coming to realize that much of what the industry has supported for the past 50 to 100 years has simply been flat out wrong.
It’s time to stand up and admit to mistakes in order to protect the population — instead of protecting the special interest groups.
At our holistic dental practice in Encinitas, we use the latest and most technologically advanced equipment. Part of our advanced “tool set” is Sirona’s new CEREC AC unit (as well as the new milling unit). While that may just sound like a fancy way to increase prices, it’s actually much more (and in fact, this unit has allowed us to reduce some of our prices).
So what is CEREC? How can CEREC help you, the patient? Why should you choose a CEREC doctor? I’ll try to answer those questions and more, below.
WHAT IS CEREC?
CEREC stands for Ceramic Reconstruction and is a sophisticated system of designing and making high quality, metal-free dental restorations in one patient visit. Developed by Sirona, CEREC utilizes 3D photography and CAD/CAM technology to assist a dentist in designing a virtual restoration (onlay, inlay, crown, or bridge) without taking impressions and, when combined with a milling unit, is able to build the actual restoration while you are still in the chair.
The computer system and camera in the CEREC AC unit have been upgraded substantially from prior units, allowing even a new user to create near perfect restorations on a routine basis.
After being a “CEREC” doctor for almost a decade, I understand the value of what CEREC brings to a practice and a patient. That’s why we recently upgraded to the latest and greatest machine, the CEREC AC. This machine allows us to take digital impressions for restorations (no more gagging on impressions!) and make precise restorations that look excellent, fit perfectly, and last a long time — all out of biocompatible, metal-free materials and all in very little time (a typical crown appointment lasts less than 2 hours, and you don’t need to come back to finish the work… it’s all done in one visit).
HOW YOU BENEFIT:
By upgrading our CEREC machine, we are able to do same-day restorations on almost all procedures (you can have a complete crown done in under two hours, in one visit), including inlays, onlays, crowns, and even some bridges, often at a lower cost to you. Restorations look outstanding, last a long time, and are biocompatible and metal-free. Fewer visits and a lower cost… that’s a pretty good benefit!
HOW DO YOU KNOW IF YOU NEED A CEREC RESTORATION?
If you have been told you need a new crown, inlay, onlay or bridge, you may be a CEREC candidate. If you have a cracked tooth, old failing restorations, or otherwise large damage on your teeth, you may be a CEREC candidate. If you are interested in replacing old metal restorations with biocompatible restorations, you might be a CEREC candidate. Essentially, any large restoration in your mouth may be a possible candidate for a CEREC restoration (this is NOT to say that just because you have an old crown, you need a new one… IF an old restoration needs replacing, CEREC may be a good option for you).
HOW IT WORKS:
The cavity preparation is first photographed and stored as a three dimensional digital model and proprietary software is then used to approximate the restoration shape using biogeneric comparisons to surrounding teeth. The practitioner then refines that model using 3D CAD software. When the model is complete a milling machine carves the actual restoration out of a ceramic block using diamond head cutters under computer control. When complete, the restoration is bonded to the tooth using a resin. CEREC is an acronym for Chairside Economical Restoration of Esthetic Ceramics. (courtesy http://www.cerec.net/index.php/index.html/_/news/products/what-is-cerec-r2)
The system is manufactured by Sirona Dental Systems in Bensheim, Germany . 1980 Development of the CEREC method at the University of Zurich W. Mörmann, M. Brandestini). 1985 Treatment of the first patient with CEREC (University of Zurich, material: VITABLOCS Mark I). 1986 Siemens acquires the license to market and further develop the CEREC equipment. 1987 CEREC 1 is introduced (chief indication: single and dual-surface inlays; material: VITABLOCS Mark II). 1990 International CEREC Symposium at the University of Zurich. 1991 Hydraulic machining drive replaced by an electronically controlled motor. 1994 CEREC 2 is introduced (range of indications: inlays, onlays, veneers). 1996 CAD/CAM Symposium to mark a decade of CEREC (University of Zurich). 1997 Sirona was formed as the result of the sale of the Dental Division of Siemens AG. 1997 CROWN 1.0 program for producing full-ceramic posterior crowns. 1998 Second material manufacturer partnership is formed (lvoclar, ProCAD). 1998 CROWN 1.11 program for producing posterior and anterior restorations. 2000 CEREC 3 is introduced (compact Windows-based CAD/CAM system). 2000 Third material manufacturer partnership is formed (3M Paradigm MZ100). 2002 More than 2,500 CEREC users in the United States and over 5,000,000 CEREC restorations placed worldwide. 2003 3D software version is released, allowing users to see 3D views of teeth and models. 2006 CEREC Celebrates 20 Years. 2006 Sirona releases BIOGENERIC version of software. This software allows for the machine to accurately reconstruct the missing tooth shape and surface. 2007 More than 23,000 CEREC users world wide. 2008 Sirona release the MCXL milling unit, this milling unit can produce a crown in 4 mins. 2009 Sirona release CEREC Acquisition Center (AC) powered by Bluecam (courtesy http://www.cerec.net/index.php/index.html/_/news/products/what-is-cerec-r2)
THE FUTURE OF DENTISTRY:
CAD/CAM dentistry such as CEREC is the future of dentistry. Utilizing modern technology, a dentist can produce an accurate, safe, biocompatible dental crown, inlay, onlay, or bridge, in just one visit. Technological advances make the system easier to use, more accurate (so you get a better fit right away, which means great comfort and fewer adjustments later), and faster (saving you time in the chair). More dentists are turning to this new technology. Some are new to the system. Others (like us) have been using it for years. While it isn’t perfect (some adjustments will need to be made, and you still need to spend a good amount of time at the dentist), anything that saves you time and money while increasing quality and comfort is a good thing for both the patient AND the dentist.
As awareness of the dangers of mercury amalgam dental fillings increases, so does the number of dentists who perform mercury removal procedures. Unfortunately, this comes with risks.
Many dentists, in their haste to help people, don’t learn the proper and safe method for removing mercury silver fillings. Why does it matter? Because by not following the proper safety protocols, you could actually be in more danger when having mercury removed than you are in just leaving the fillings in your mouth.
When mercury fillings are removed, the mercury is disturbed by the drill, releasing dangerous vapors and mercury particulates in your mouth.
So how do you protect yourself? How do you know if your dentist is following the proper safety protocol when removing your old mercury amalgam fillings? Below is a quick video that should help you better understand the proper protocol (as specified by the International Academy of Oral Medicine and Toxicology’s (IAOMT)) so you can ask your dentist about it and recognize the steps he or she should be taking during your procedure.
The economy is bad. Unemployment is high. Real estate values are low… It’s a stressful time for many — if not most — families in America right now. But who’s taking the worst of it? Who — or what — is the biggest punching bag for all our stress? It’s possibly our teeth.
In a recent New York Times article (When Stress Takes a Toll on Your Teeth, By Camille Sweeney, October 7, 2009), Manhattan dentist Dr. Robert Rawdin, reported to have seen “20 to 25 percent more patients with teeth grinding symptoms in the last year. And in San Diego, Dr. Gerald McCracken said that over the last 18 months his number of cases had more than doubled.”
“We’re finding in a lot of double-income families, we have the people who have lost jobs and are worried, and then we have the spouse, who still has the job, with the added pressure and uncertainty,” Dr. McCracken said. “This can cause some real grinding at night.”
Teeth grinding — or Bruxism — is an unconscious act, so most people don’t know they grind their teeth. In fact, most grinders are night grinders, rubbing away at their teeth as they sleep. The only way to distinguish what’s going on is symptomatic. Jaw and facial pain, headaches and earaches are some of the most commonly reported. Perhaps the most damaging affect, however, is the physical wear on the teeth.
Teeth grinders can exert as much as 10 times the amount of pressure on their teeth when the are sleeping as they do when they are eating. Not coincidentally, they can also wear away the enamel on their teeth 10 times faster. Since we only get one set of “adult” teeth that are expected to last us a lifetime, the long term affects of severe tooth wear can be devastating.
So what’s the solution? On the high-end is veneers. Expensive, veneers can repair the look and functionality of your teeth. Unfortunately, veneers won’t help solve the root problem: you’ll still grind your teeth. The most common solution is an occlusal splint, or night guard.
Custom night guards can not only help stop the grinding, they can actually help train the muscles to stop the grinding motion altogether for some patients, eliminating the long term need for the guard. Night guards are not all the same. We fabricate guards the fit the lower teeth and are adjusted to the proper bite alignment.
While inexpensive night guards are available over the counter, many are made of soft plastics that can actually increase the chewing and grinding action, compounding the problem. That’s right, run of the mill guards can make things worse!
Stress can affect us all in different ways, but one of the more common manifestations is the grinding of our teeth. If your teeth show wear in your molars or anywhere else — whether you’re stressed or not — or if you’re getting frequent facial pain or headaches, see a dentist. While over the counter and prescription pain medications can alleviate the pain, they will do nothing to solve the problem, which may well be rooted in your teeth.